Energy assessments and audits are flexible tools that allow building owners insight into the “how,” “when,” and “why” energy is being used. They offer a wide range of benefits – and each can be chosen based on a certain level of specificity and criticality of the facilities you are measuring. The below guide helps you see which audit might be the best fit for your organization.
Preliminary and Investment Grade Analysis
This is your most basic energy audit. Preliminary and Investment Grade Energy Use Analysis is the most basic energy audit and involves the analysis of historic energy use and cost. Energy use is typically benchmarked or compared against similar buildings to determine if further engineering study and analysis are likely to produce significant energy savings. It is also an important step in determining how in-depth your audits and assessments should be.
ASHRAE Audit – Level I
This energy audit is the basic starting point for building energy optimization. It involves interviews with facility staff, a review of utility bills or other operating data and a walkthrough of the facility. The goal is to identify glaring areas of energy inefficiency. The data is compiled and used to complete a preliminary report detailing low-cost / no-cost measures and potential capital improvements for further study in subsequent audits. This is adequate for prioritizing energy efficiency projects.
ASHRAE Audit – Level II
Building upon the ASHRAE Level – I analysis, detailed energy calculations and financial analysis are measured for proposed energy efficiency measures. Energy consumption is broken out by end-use, identifying areas which present the greatest efficiency opportunities. Utility rates are analyzed to determine if there are rate change opportunities and key building representatives are interviewed for insights into building operational characteristics, potential problem areas and identifying program goals.
ASHRAE Audit – Level III
Focusing on engineering analysis of the potential capital-intensive projects identified in previous levels of ASHRAE audits, this more detailed approach gathers field data in a more rigorous analysis. Existing utility data is supplemented with sub-metering of major energy-consuming systems and monitoring of those system’s operating characteristics. This provides a realistic baseline to compare energy and operating savings for proposed measures, pre- and post- energy project implementation.